NEW DELHI, 22nd July, 2016 (WAM) — An Indian Air Force plane carrying 29 military personnel to a remote island chain in the Bay of Bengal went missing on Friday, the military said.

The Russian-made AN-32 was on its way to Port Blair, the capital of the Andaman and Nicobar chain of islands, from Chennai when it disappeared from radar.

There were 21 military personnel on board including six crew. The other people on board were civilians, some family members of soldiers deployed on the islands.

A navy spokesman said surveillance planes and ships were searching for the aircraft. It was carrying service personnel to the strategic islands near the Malacca Straits, where India has a military base.

The aircraft was last detected on radar 151 nautical miles east of Chennai, making a left turn with a rapid loss of height from 23,000 ft., according to a note provided by the air force to the Defence Ministry.


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